or Connect
AppleInsider › Forums › Mac Hardware › Current Mac Hardware › Teardown of Retina MacBook Pro finds soldered RAM, proprietary SSD
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:

Teardown of Retina MacBook Pro finds soldered RAM, proprietary SSD - Page 3

post #81 of 193

I wonder how Apple technicians are reacting at the thought of repairing these new laptops.

post #82 of 193
Quote:
Originally Posted by steveH View Post

 

Reliability: Cut out socket-related failure modes (admittedly small factor, but...) You test memory before assembly, don't you?

 

I would check it before soldering, and after soldering, as this processing step can cause failures (soldering might damage the ram chips if they were 'on the edge of being good' for instance, as well as the possibility of a bad solder)

post #83 of 193
I run Mail, Safari, Xcode, Terminal, Text Wrangler, Pages and various other utilities on a daily basis. Never needed more than the original 2 GB.
I remember the old days when I was programming on Atari ST. A guy named Dominique Laurent had programmed a nice word processing application called "Le Rédacteur" : it was 100 % assembly… 256 KB were more than sufficient…
post #84 of 193
Quote:
Originally Posted by al_bundy View Post

because instead of paying someone to stick RAM in there and having a supply line for RAM you let your motherboard maker take care of it

 

We've already established Apple isn't paying a whole lot of money for assembly workers to stick anything in anything. They're in China for a reason. And if it did come down to cost, personally I'd gladly pay an extra $1 or $2 if I could have socketed RAM.

post #85 of 193
The New MacBook Pro wasn't meant to be fixed by mortal men.
It was given to man by the gods on Mt. Cupertino.

"Apple should pull the plug on the iPhone."

John C. Dvorak, 2007
Reply

"Apple should pull the plug on the iPhone."

John C. Dvorak, 2007
Reply
post #86 of 193
Quote:
Originally Posted by Haggar View Post

I wonder how Apple technicians are reacting at the thought of repairing these new laptops.

You Can Buy Your Own Apple Store For Only $38.5k

Apple Store (Copy) Fixture Liquidation Sale
post #87 of 193

why is anyone surprised? It is like a Giant iPad, and architecture is pretty much the same.

Apple had me at scrolling
Reply
Apple had me at scrolling
Reply
post #88 of 193
Quote:
Originally Posted by Haggar View Post

I wonder how Apple technicians are reacting at the thought of repairing these new laptops.

 My guess is they are not going to be repairing/replacing components like the battery, LCD Screen, Ram, Keyboard, Trackpad, or SDD.

 

It's probably going to be broken down into 3 components: screen assembly, main logic board (CPU+GPU+RAM+SDD...), and case assembly (metal case, keyboard/trackpad, batteries, other attached components).  That would be the simplest and easiest way to train technicians and stock parts.  Each part is probably $500+.  We'll see what iFixit sells for replacement parts over the next few weeks, it's probably going to be at a similar granularity. 

post #89 of 193
Quote:
Originally Posted by Neo42 View Post

Ouch, soldered ram.  I much prefer the 4 slots/32GB in my asus bricktop.

 

The truth is people don't really upgrade their RAM much anymore though.  While it used to be standard procedure to double the memory of a computer half-way through its life to give it a "new lease" sort of speak, this hardly ever happens anymore.  Most Macintosh desktops keep the same RAM for the life of the computer nowadays.  Laptop memory upgrades are even rarer.  

 

Another thing people are forgetting is that no program on OS-X scan use more than 4GB of RAM and even then, only a very few do that.  So unless you are running two copies of Final Cut side by side or something similar, you won't actually need any more than 8GB because your computer will rarely if ever need it.  The retina displays might be the first computers that need more (I haven't used one yet so I don't know), but for the average user today, 4GB is overkill and 8GB is a huge luxury. 


Edited by Gazoobee - 6/13/12 at 10:32am
post #90 of 193

It looks like the designer did not regard the case as something that "covers" the rest, but as an integrated part of a whole. A break with tradition but also an insight conceptually.

post #91 of 193

Obviously Apple doesn't want the consumer improving or tampering with its decision so they went to the trouble and extra cost of soldering the RAM and proprietary SSD. Look forward in the near future  to a completely sealed Unibody design which doesn't even give the consumeer the ability to see whats inside the unit as it will be sealed.

post #92 of 193
Quote:
Originally Posted by BUSHMAN4 View Post

Obviously Apple doesn't want the consumer improving or tampering with its decision so they went to the trouble and extra cost of soldering the RAM....

It's the other way around.  Soldering the RAM on the motherboard, rather than on SO-DIMMs, is cheaper because there are fewer parts and fewer manufacturing steps.

Mac user since August 1983.
Reply
Mac user since August 1983.
Reply
post #93 of 193
Quote:
Originally Posted by mcarling View Post

It's the other way around.  Soldering the RAM on the motherboard, rather than on SO-DIMMs, is cheaper because there are fewer parts and fewer manufacturing steps.

Yes. The Intel Ultrabook manufacturers have been having trouble matching price on the Macbook Air. It looks like Apple intends to extend their difficulties.

post #94 of 193
Quote:
Originally Posted by charlituna View Post

 

Yep. The brackets and such add bulk. 

 

They do, more than a millimeter overall and despite a previous posters statement otherwise a soldered connection does perform better.  Less voltage is required to satisfy signal to noise ratios meaning incrementally less battery drain.  How else does anyone think Apple got a 30 day standby when the best you can get with plug-in RAM is a week?  That difference will almost be entirely in the seemingly infinitesimal lowering of the electrical requirements for keeping RAM alive.

 

 


Quote:
Originally Posted by thesource291 View Post

Its certainly in line with the direction Apple wants to take all their products.  Control the OS experience and now the further control of the hardware experience.  It is certainly becoming more of an "appliance".  In no way is it a bad experience, but its definitely a little disappointing to some, like myself.  I own multiple Mac products and consider them great machines.  Without exception I have performed ram and hard drive upgrades around the 3rd year to give each box a speed bump and extend its life.  Too date this has been a pretty successful experience, especially with SSD's coming to market.  This appears to no longer be possible, though who knows what Apple may offer as a service down the road.  What it does do is sway most people, like me, to future proof my purchase upfront through Apple, instead of a third party 3 years down the road.  Smart business move by Apple I imagine...  Who knows what 3 years down the road will look like??  Obviously the market is changing, with Apple setting the direction and "tinkering" seems to be in the rear view mirror ;-).  Hopefully they leave the door open with the Mac Pro's...but I doubt it.

 

 

This is going to be the common thread of the long term discussion -- Apple playing the Nanny Supplier role.  Unfortunately, it is an opinion solidly devoid of understanding the engineering tradeoffs made.  If you want upgradeability, you give up efficiency. It may be only be microvolts paid to use pin sockets, but added up over an entire month soldering the RAM gives more than 4x the standby performance. And that is with the advertised power-napping.

 

What, you don't need 30 days of standby time you say?  Well that 30 days also means that over a weekend you only deplete ~8% battery capacity from end of work Friday to starting Monday, compared to loosing ~36% with a standard system. What can you do with that extra ~28%.  Well, you get an extra two hours runtime on a MBP, or an extra hour of the max 4 on a luggable fully specced Windows laptop.  That's a difference between making to lunch or not without hitting the power cord.

 

So do I want upgradeable RAM?  Or do I don't want to have to worry about power cords for Monday meetings, classes or laboratories?  The easy retort of plug it in at home means either buying another power supply offsetting some of the RAM cost difference between 8 and 16GB, or do some additional lugging.  Sure those are possible, but not having to remember either of them can be brilliant.


Edited by Hiro - 6/13/12 at 11:39am
.
Reply
.
Reply
post #95 of 193
Quote:
Originally Posted by mcarling View Post

Cost: will be lower because there are fewer parts and fewer assembly steps.

Reliability: One QCs memory chips before soldering them to the motherboard.

Performance: Future JEDEC specs will support higher bandwidth and lower latency ONLY for directly soldered RAM.

Compact design: At least one out of four benefits was obvious.

 

I doubt there are ANY cost savings by soldering the RAM directly onto the motherboard, however there are likely to be greater profits in doing this.  The cost savings (if anything) would be maybe $1 for both the connector, and extra premium for buying SODIMMS over DRAM modules...  This gets offset by two factors:

 

1.  The need for separate assembly lines for 8GB and 16 GB boards.  The additional part numbers etc

2.  Repairability... DRAM chips can, and DO go bad over time, and more importantly solder joints fail over time (just ask those of us unfortunate enough to have bought G3 or G4 ibooks).  If the RAM can easily be swapped out, a technician can quickly determine if this is the problem.   This saves defective boards in the factory (although there it's "relatively" cheap to desolder and replace a bad DRAM chip), but more importantly it causes savings on warranty repairs (lets face it, you need to buy applecare if you want a mac to last more than a year... my current macbook got repaired about 5 times under warranty, and currently has a battery that's rapidly increasing in physical size so that machine can't sit down level) because a technician at the apple store can quickly check the ram.. Lets say only 1% of all manufactured machines have a fault that can be repaired by replacing a DRAM chip.  The extra cost of fixing the broken logic board (over replacing a DRAM chip) is likely well over $100 (in fact, if the machine was out of warranty, I can assure you the cost apple would charge us would be well over $1000).  This extra cost later on means each machine costs more than $1 more than before, offsetting manufacturing benefits.

 

However, apple can make a larger profit by integrating everything.  Apple easily charges twice the going price for DRAM, so there's that, plus now users are forced to upgrade their entire machine because they don't have enough RAM (OSX is a ram hog, my macbook had 3GB of RAM, and is always running out while running basic tasks like a web browser (with many tabs open), mail, a terminal window (with multiple tabs), adium, preview, itunes etc open, don't get me started if I launch office).

 

I think in the long run, this will bite apple in the butt, as people get burned from this experience years later.  I likely will be in the market for a new mac in the next year (my macbook is limping along), and although I love some of the new pros specs, I can't justify the current price (I'd likely be waiting a year anyhow as I'd love a haswell machine), and the lack of user serviceable hardware just increases the price by an extra $300 or more (depending on the size SSD I think I'd need).  That works out to about $1000 per year of owning the computer, because once applecare is up, the machine's useful life could end any day.  Definitely not in that market.

 

I don't know what I'll do for my computing needs... for now my ipad is holding me over... maybe i'll just switch entirely to windows/linux, guess it depends on what windows 8 brings us, but it looks like apple hardware lacks the cool factors it used to have (mac laptops used to be some of the best machines for sericeability, the macbook made it incredibly easy to replace the HDD and ram).

 

Phil 

post #96 of 193

Apple's surge to the top of the stock market valuations has happened because they were able to correctly predict that customers could be lured into replacing their electronics much more frequently than in the past.

 

We are not in the post-PC era; we are in the disposable PC era.

Computer and electronics manufacturers have completely abandoned the idea of making quality, long lasting products with big price tags and moved to making gadgets with smaller price tags that have to be replaced frequently

 

Not that many years ago people bought tower computers that would last 6 years and then be re-sold to someone with lesser needs. They attached those towers to third party displays that were expected to last 10 years or more.

 

Then came the widespread adoption of the notebook computer and all-in-one desktop. Upgrades were crippled forcing users to upgrade more frequently. Displays were built-in so users couldn't buy them from third parties and re-use them with their next computer.

 

Now we have the iPad. After two years Apple stops supporting it with OS upgrades. Within three years developers stop making compatible apps and the device has to be replaced.

post #97 of 193
Quote:
Originally Posted by Gazoobee View Post

 

The truth is people don't really upgrade their RAM much anymore though.  While it used to be standard procedure to double the memory of a computer half-way through its life to give it a "new lease" sort of speak, this hardly ever happens anymore.  Most Macintosh desktops keep the same RAM for the life of the computer nowadays.  Laptop memory upgrades are even rarer.  

 

Another thing people are forgetting is that no program on OS-X scan use more than 4GB of RAM and even then, only a very few do that.  So unless you are running two copies of Final Cut side by side or something similar, you won't actually need any more than 8GB because your computer will rarely if ever need it.  The retina displays might be the first computers that need more (I haven't used one yet so I don't know), but for the average user today, 4GB is overkill and 8GB is a huge luxury. 

 

I agree, 32GB is overkill (ridiculous), but I do at times run multiple VMs and it's nice to give each of them 8GB or more.

 

4GB should be the minimum now days, you know, for average users.  This machine is not for "average users" though, is it?

post #98 of 193
Quote:
Originally Posted by mausz View Post

Cost : Why would it be lower ? Support/replacement is more expensive

Reliability : Maybe, because you won't have badly seated ram, but wat happens when at QC you find a bad memory chip....

Performance : No difference between soldered/non-soldered

Compact design : The only plausible reasong in my opinion.

Cost: No RAM Slots, no moving parts needed to keep RAM in place, no extra bits around the RAM to keep it electrically insulated. Directly mounted on the Logic board means you eliminate a variety of extra bits needed for conventional, removable RAM.

Reliability: As above; they are not in a slot with small clips keeping them in place. They may break and the RAM my slip just ever so slightly causing system failure (I've had that happen before). With regards to QC, they'll do what they do with flat panel displays, test them before putting them in and then test the final product.

Performance: Since tracks etched onto a motherboard with regards to RAM are still metal then you are indeed correct in saying that there will be no performance gain.

Compact Design: The third reason, actually. ;)

... at night.

Reply

... at night.

Reply
post #99 of 193
Quote:
Originally Posted by Neo42 View Post

 

I agree, 32GB is overkill (ridiculous), but I do at times run multiple VMs and it's nice to give each of them 8GB or more.

 

4GB should be the minimum now days, you know, for average users.  This machine is not for "average users" though, is it?

32GB is what you'd expect in a fairly powerful server.

Though, I can see 16GB as a good amount of RAM to have for professional use. Me in photoshop can easily gobble up the 10GB I have in my iMac within two hours.

... at night.

Reply

... at night.

Reply
post #100 of 193
Quote:
Originally Posted by philgar View Post

 

The need for separate assembly lines for 8GB and 16 GB boards.

That's not how it works.  They are assembled on the same line.  The switch between 8GB and 16GB is done at a work shift change.

Mac user since August 1983.
Reply
Mac user since August 1983.
Reply
post #101 of 193
Quote:
Originally Posted by Junkyard Dawg View Post

So the low end Retina MBP is actually $2400 unless you only need the 8GB for email and internet stuff.

 

A $2000+ laptop without upgradable RAM?  A sh!t ton of bullsh!t!

 

8 Gigs of RAM is plenty for the vast majority of buyers, even those who do a whole lot more than email and 'web.  They can comfortably leave those apps open all the time, and can still have plenty of room left available for Photoshop and Word both.   

 

People can use 2 gigs of ram with minimal hassle.  4 gigs is plenty for most people.  8 gigs is a lot for most people.  16 is crazy lots, except for a vanishingly small number of potential buyers.

post #102 of 193

From date of hardware purchase, not AppleCare purchase

 

"Every Mac and Apple display comes with a one-year limited warranty and up to 90 days of complimentary telephone technical support. Extend your coverage to three years from your hardware product’s original purchase date with the AppleCare Protection Plan."

 

http://www.apple.com/support/products/mac.html

post #103 of 193
Quote:
Originally Posted by BigBillyGoatGruff View Post

I don't mind that the RAM is soldered and non-upgradable.  I don't mind that the SSD is proprietary.  But it really puts me out that the 256GB SSD is the only option on the base model.  Anyone know why that is?

 

 

That way, if you need a normal sized drive, like many people will, you will buy a more expensive machine.  256 is too small for today's usage if you  want to keep things on the machine's drive without swapping in and out a lot with an external drive or iCloud.

post #104 of 193
Quote:
Originally Posted by digitalclips View Post


My first thought was Apple should make it very, very clear it's not upgradable for the very reason you mention.

It would be good if they made user serviceability concerns very clear in the tech specs pages and on the cto configuration steps. It's easy to assume these things can be upgraded due to precedence, so clarity would be a good thing.

 

 

Quote:

Originally Posted by MacBook Pro View Post


The problem is that Apple Care only covers issues caused (during the performance of repairs) by Apple Authorized Service Providers. I see quite a few shops that aren't Apple Authorized Service Providers though which is unfortunate for the average consumer who may not know better. I should further add that Apple is not accepting applications for Apple Authorized Service Providers nor have they for some time. Essentially, Apple is cornering the market on Apple Authorized Service.
I should further add that the Samsung SSD used in the MacBook Pro is proprietary although the controller is standard.
The reduction in RAM prices from Apple is an excellent move. Thank you, Apple.

This will suck more for people in countries or even counties that lack Apple Stores. I've always gone to authorized repair centers. You get better service, and you can direct questions to the repair techs.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Cpsro View Post

The 2013 Mac Pro will also have soldered RAM.

You can't extrapolate things that far out.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Quadra 610 View Post

Apple now has the power to go proprietary, and consumers will back them all the way. 

I wouldn't be sure about that. Apple has their flops too. My concern would be repair costs. We've all seen people mention the quality of their old macs that are still running. It annoys me that the trend is toward disposable technology as the things that can brick a  computer  keep increasing as do the costs of repair with integrated components.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Tallest Skil View Post


The new Ivy Bridge ones should allow 32GB.

The chipset allows it.

Quote:
Originally Posted by jragosta View Post


Ultimately, it comes down to how many people actually bother with upgrading their RAM. If the number is small enough, soldered RAM isn't a problem. If a significant number of people want to upgrade their RAM, there could be some backlash.
However, given the modest price for the upgrade to 16 GB, I would simply get the higher RAM from the start and it should be sufficient for most people for the life of the computer. Heck, I'm currently still stuck at 3 GB and lots of people are using even less.

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by benanderson89 View Post

32GB is what you'd expect in a fairly powerful server.

Though, I can see 16GB as a good amount of RAM to have for professional use. Me in photoshop can easily gobble up the 10GB I have in my iMac within two hours.

It doesn't matter what seems like a lot. Since it goes by a factor of 2, if you could benefit from more than 16GB (this is different from whether or not it's crucial) your next step is 32. Plenty of applications can gobble more than 10GB. It's just that you figure out how long you may be using this machine. If the available specs will become a strain within that time it's an issue. My bigger complaint is locking it to 1GB of vram. That same card often uses 2GB in cheaper computers, and since you mentioned adobe, they recommend 1GB in CS6 for the Mercury engine. If they recommend 2GB with a minimum of one with CS7, that will make this feel a little strained. It's just kind of a low number for a machine released in mid 2012.

post #105 of 193
Quote:
Originally Posted by JerrySwitched26 View Post

 

8 Gigs of RAM is plenty for the vast majority of buyers, even those who do a whole lot more than email and 'web.  They can comfortably leave those apps open all the time, and can still have plenty of room left available for Photoshop and Word both.   

 

People can use 2 gigs of ram with minimal hassle.  4 gigs is plenty for most people.  8 gigs is a lot for most people.  16 is crazy lots, except for a vanishingly small number of potential buyers.

But we can't assume that 8 gigs on a 2012 Retina MBP with Mountain Lion will have the RAM headroom that a user with the same on a 2010 MPB with SL would be enjoying.  Could it make enough of a difference for someone who is used to working with RAM nearly maxed out?  We won't know for a few weeks.

post #106 of 193
Quote:
Originally Posted by EauVive View Post

As a former digital hardware engineer, I have a strong negative feeling about this. Soldered RAM means a a complex operation if just one circuit fails or the connexion on a single pin floats, etc., which happens sometimes with reflow soldering.
Glued battery cells? Tell me that’s a nightmare! You guys will have to cuddle your battery because changing it will be rather expensive…
In my opinion, this is an engineering prototype actually industrialized without any further refinements. Maybe they were constrained by time and had no opportunity to work out a cleaner design, but it looks half-finished. They could not afford a WWDC without a real announcement, so it seems Apple released this machine in emergency… Next iteration will be cleaner I hope.
PS : Contrarily to what most people state here, I own a 2 GB model (late-2008 Unibody MacBook with upgradable HD, Ram and easy access battery), do some heavy development with it, and I never hit the point where the machine would go so sluggish it would be unusable…

 

You need to think deeper and refresh yourself if you are a former hardware engineer rendering an opinion.  Your thought process is indicative of the lack of progress in design most of the electronics industry has seen over the last decade.

 

Glued batteries are because the SINGLE largest cause of battery failures/overheats is fastener puncturing.  No fastener, no chance of puncturing. And with battery electronics that actually preserve battery performance for 4-6 years rather than the Dell throwaways I have to buy for the shop laptops every year the batteries last as long as the planned lifespan of the machine.  And not providing a reason to open up the enclosure reduces the possibility of ham-fisted "where's that last screw" problems followed by, "oh well, these keep it secure enough" and the ensuing fastener battery puncture months later.  It's happened.  More than once...

 

Your comments on soldering RAM totally ignore modern IC robotic assembly techniques.  Your assessment was only a statistically significant problem when done by early robotics or human hands, even with alignment guides.  Production engineering has come a long way in the last 20 years, making previous assumptions obsolete.

 

We finally have an engineering outlook that takes more into account than just the engineers hourly cost and bottom line cost of manufacturing into account.  Sure the results look alien to run-of-the-mill engineers, the results are coming from considering issues long left off the table either out of ignorance or lack of desire to increase the scope of the examination.  These incorrectly labeled "engineering prototype actually industrialized without any further refinements" artifacts which are the result of exactly the opposite, actually have a far higher ROI for the engineering and manufacturing process costs than the old fashioned process of limiting the design process by cost constraining it.  It's not surprising that an old school informed dismissal misses the point on all counts.

.
Reply
.
Reply
post #107 of 193
dupe deleted -- I hate where the edit button is!!!!!
.
Reply
.
Reply
post #108 of 193
Quote:
Originally Posted by Haggar View Post

I wonder how Apple technicians are reacting at the thought of repairing these new laptops.

 

They are loving it if they work for Apple.  You either replace a drive, a motherboard or a battery.  So many fewer whacky things to go wrong.  

 

If they don't work for Apple and are worried about not being able to charge those hours spent tracking down those whacky issues, then not so much.

.
Reply
.
Reply
post #109 of 193
Quote:
Originally Posted by Gazoobee View Post

The truth is people don't really upgrade their RAM much anymore though.  While it used to be standard procedure to double the memory of a computer half-way through its life to give it a "new lease" sort of speak, this hardly ever happens anymore.  Most Macintosh desktops keep the same RAM for the life of the computer nowadays.  Laptop memory upgrades are even rarer.  

Another thing people are forgetting is that no program on OS-X scan use more than 4GB of RAM and even then, only a very few do that.  So unless you are running two copies of Final Cut side by side or something similar, you won't actually need any more than 8GB because your computer will rarely if ever need it.  The retina displays might be the first computers that need more (I haven't used one yet so I don't know), but for the average user today, 4GB is overkill and 8GB is a huge luxury. 

It actually goes beyond that. When VM has to swap an active app to disk, the wasted time is significant when you're using a 5400 or 7200 rpm drive. With SSD, the time spent is swapping to VM is greatly reduced, so the effect of swapping is less noticeable. Note how most people using the MBA brag about its responsiveness - even when using a 2 GB system.

Quote:
Originally Posted by philgar View Post

I doubt there are ANY cost savings by soldering the RAM directly onto the motherboard, however there are likely to be greater profits in doing this.  The cost savings (if anything) would be maybe $1 for both the connector, and extra premium for buying SODIMMS over DRAM modules...

There are quite a few savings:

1. Cost of separate daughter cards for RAM (either paid by Apple directly if they make them or indirectly if they pay someone else)
2. Additional soldering (you have to solder the RAM to the daughter card and the socket to the motherboard
3. Sockets with clips
4. Extra space inside the computer (which means less room for battery)
5. Cost of inserting the SO-DIMMs (soldering is probably done by machine)
6. Extra quality control costs since SO-DIMMs are more likely to have problems due to insertion errors
7. Extra cost to pay someone to do the extra soldering, extra daughter cards, etc
8. Inventory cost for carrying all of the extra components
9. Additional failures due to all the extra soldering
10. Additional tech support costs from people whose SO-DIMM came loose in shipping
And that's just off the top of my head. Unless you've been in manufacturing and extensively studied the Toyota Production System (or Lean Manufacturing), it's easy to underestimate the added cost of complexity.

Quote:
Originally Posted by jlandd View Post

But we can't assume that 8 gigs on a 2012 Retina MBP with Mountain Lion will have the RAM headroom that a user with the same on a 2010 MPB with SL would be enjoying.  Could it make enough of a difference for someone who is used to working with RAM nearly maxed out?  We won't know for a few weeks.

There's no sign that it's going to be significantly different based on anything I've read.

And the OS overhead is small enough that on an 8 GB systems, it's hardly going to be noticeable even if overhead were increased by 20% or so. Again, keep in mind that you're swapping to SSD rather than physical disk, so VM paging is not going to have anywhere near the penalty it has on previous (non-SSD) systems.
"I'm way over my head when it comes to technical issues like this"
Gatorguy 5/31/13
Reply
"I'm way over my head when it comes to technical issues like this"
Gatorguy 5/31/13
Reply
post #110 of 193
Quote:
Originally Posted by benanderson89 View Post

Cost: No RAM Slots, no moving parts needed to keep RAM in place, no extra bits around the RAM to keep it electrically insulated. Directly mounted on the Logic board means you eliminate a variety of extra bits needed for conventional, removable RAM.

Reliability: As above; they are not in a slot with small clips keeping them in place. They may break and the RAM my slip just ever so slightly causing system failure (I've had that happen before). With regards to QC, they'll do what they do with flat panel displays, test them before putting them in and then test the final product.

Performance: Since tracks etched onto a motherboard with regards to RAM are still metal then you are indeed correct in saying that there will be no performance gain.

Compact Design: The third reason, actually. ;)

The bold is incorrect.  Performance also includes power performance and soldering is much better, although at thresholds many engineers have considered ignorable for decades.  Just look up a few posts and I dispel that.

.
Reply
.
Reply
post #111 of 193
Quote:
Originally Posted by Hiro View Post

They are loving it if they work for Apple.  You either replace a drive, a motherboard or a battery.  So many fewer whacky things to go wrong.  

If they don't work for Apple and are worried about not being able to charge those hours spent tracking down those whacky issues, then not so much.

As a consumer, though, I much prefer a system with fewer points of failure. I'd rather have a system with 1 chance in 1000 of failing rather than one with 1 chance in 100 of failing - even if it costs more to repair the former (especially since I always recommend AppleCare for laptops, anyway).
"I'm way over my head when it comes to technical issues like this"
Gatorguy 5/31/13
Reply
"I'm way over my head when it comes to technical issues like this"
Gatorguy 5/31/13
Reply
post #112 of 193

640KB ought to be enough for anyone.

post #113 of 193
Quote:
Originally Posted by liney View Post

"RAM is soldered onto the logic board and cannot be upgraded, and that the proprietary solid-state drive memory was supplied by Samsung."

 

RAM = memory

drive = storage

Not sure what you're getting at there, but it <looks> like you're trying to correct a mistake that isn't there and in the process making assertions that aren't true. The quote you appear to be correcting is, in fact, entirely accurate.

 

Short version:

    SSD's <are> comprised of memory modules (among other things).

 

Slightly longer, somewhat pedantic version:

    "RAM" is what we generally use to describe volatile primary memory (although conventional DRAM used in most computers isn't truly "random access memory", but it's close enough ;)). For casual purposes, we often use RAM and memory interchangeably, and while RAM is memory, not all memory is not RAM.

 

    Strictly speaking, the "drive" is not a memory device, the drive is the mechanism that facilitates reading from or writing to memory (typically non-volatile secondary memory used for short to medium term data storage). In a "hard" or "floppy" disk drive (a good example for the differentiation between drive and storage medium), the medium is an electromagnetic disk. For SSD's the medium is typically flash memory modules (although some solid state drives were actually built using off the shelf 'RAM' modules).

post #114 of 193
Quote:
Originally Posted by EauVive View Post

I run Mail, Safari, Xcode, Terminal, Text Wrangler, Pages and various other utilities on a daily basis. Never needed more than the original 2 GB.

 

That's great.  Of course, the key word there is UTILITIES.  Other people do work that requires apps that are somewhat more demanding in terms of RAM requirements, yes?  Like, audio post for a video project.  Try running Pro Tools alongside a big Final Cut session then popping into Photoshop or Illustrator for a quick tweak on a machine with 2GB.  If you had to do that every day I'm sure you would then feel the need for more RAM.

 

The fact that you are among the lucky group who can work effectively with a small amount of RAM is not necessarily an argument against eliminating user-upgradability.

post #115 of 193
Quote:
Originally Posted by EauVive View Post

I run Mail, Safari, Xcode, Terminal, Text Wrangler, Pages and various other utilities on a daily basis. Never needed more than the original 2 GB.
I remember the old days when I was programming on Atari ST. A guy named Dominique Laurent had programmed a nice word processing application called "Le Rédacteur" : it was 100 % assembly… 256 KB were more than sufficient…

 

2GB is plenty for users who only work with text and use Safari.  Usually the sorts of consumers who use their laptop for text and web browsing don't spend $2500 on their laptop.

post #116 of 193
Quote:
Originally Posted by Hiro View Post

 

What, you don't need 30 days of standby time you say?  Well that 30 days also means that over a weekend you only deplete ~8% battery capacity from end of work Friday to starting Monday, compared to loosing ~36% with a standard system. What can you do with that extra ~28%.  Well, you get an extra two hours runtime on a MBP...

 

...  The easy retort of plug it in at home means either buying another power supply offsetting some of the RAM cost difference between 8 and 16GB, or do some additional lugging. ...

 

You make a good point about small savings adding up. It occurs to me that longer standby time equals fewer charge cycles, extending the usable lifetime of the batteries.

 

I actually don't mind the soldered RAM (too much), but the glued in batteries? I'd like to hear the real story behind that decision.

post #117 of 193
Quote:
Originally Posted by Gazoobee View Post

 

The truth is people don't really upgrade their RAM much anymore though.  While it used to be standard procedure to double the memory of a computer half-way through its life to give it a "new lease" sort of speak, this hardly ever happens anymore.

 

According to whom?  I'm not trying to start an argument and I'm not saying you're wrong, but I would like to know how you came to that conclusion.  Why do you believe mid-life RAM upgrades happen any less frequently now than they did a few years ago?

post #118 of 193

In a very near future, RAM will not be as important as it used to be. Of course this is a Pro machine, and pro apps do better with more RAM. But as developers become better and technologies become better integrated, as well as with the help of SSD, software will require less RAM to do the same work. And disk swapping (when ram is full and the software uses memory on the disk) on an SSD is almost seamless, and will become more seamless as they get speedier. Who know, RAM may as well disappear in a few years.

post #119 of 193
Quote:
Originally Posted by v5v View Post

 

That's great.  Of course, the key word there is UTILITIES.  Other people do work that requires apps that are somewhat more demanding in terms of RAM requirements, yes?  Like, audio post for a video project.  Try running Pro Tools alongside a big Final Cut session then popping into Photoshop or Illustrator for a quick tweak on a machine with 2GB.  If you had to do that every day I'm sure you would then feel the need for more RAM.

 

The fact that you are among the lucky group who can work effectively with a small amount of RAM is not necessarily an argument against eliminating user-upgradability.

Also there are PS users who never edit more than one 25 meg image at a time, but there are those who need ten 200 meg images loaded together and many who spend all day working with psd files of over a gig.  So right tool for the right job and all that, but the RMBP isn't a machine to grow with, which is something we're all used to.  Gotta pop for the maxed out model if you think you'll be getting there eventually.

post #120 of 193
Quote:
Originally Posted by JerrySwitched26 View Post

 

8 Gigs of RAM is plenty for the vast majority of buyers, even those who do a whole lot more than email and 'web.  They can comfortably leave those apps open all the time, and can still have plenty of room left available for Photoshop and Word both.   

 

People can use 2 gigs of ram with minimal hassle.  4 gigs is plenty for most people.  8 gigs is a lot for most people.  16 is crazy lots, except for a vanishingly small number of potential buyers.

I mostly agree with your breakdown of RAM needs, but this is for today.  What about in three years?  Will Mountain Lion's successor do fine with 8 GB RAM?  The point is, if you're buying a computer without upgradable RAM, you're forced to buy enough RAM for 3-4 years from now, not for today.  Or you can be an obedient Apple consumer and dispose your computer in two years to buy another one.  

 

As for 2 GB RAM being sufficient for most people - open Safari, load a bunch of tabs, then open a few documents in Word and Excel, and you'll soon be seeing the beach-ball.  4 GB is really the minimum for a pleasant OS X experience.  8 GB is fine unless you're into editing photos or video, then you'll be wishing you had 12 or maybe 16 if you're a multi-tasker.  Five years from now (about the end of the Retina MBP lifespan), I'd wager that 8 GB will the the minimum RAM needed for a pleasant OS X experience for those doing anything beyond email and twitter.

New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:
  Return Home
  Back to Forum: Current Mac Hardware
AppleInsider › Forums › Mac Hardware › Current Mac Hardware › Teardown of Retina MacBook Pro finds soldered RAM, proprietary SSD